Site effects outweigh riparian influences on ground-dwelling beetles adjacent to first order streams in wet eucalypt forest
Authors: Baker, Sue; Richardson, Alastair; Barmuta, Leon
Source: Biodiversity and Conservation, Volume 16, Number 7, June 2007 , pp. 1999-2014(16)
Abstract:In wet eucalypt forest with a rainforest understorey the vegetation adjacent to first order streams does not form a distinct riparian strip. This study investigated the riparian response of terrestrial ground-dwelling beetles adjacent to four such streams in Tasmania, Australia. Beetle assemblages varied more between the four sites than they did with distance from stream within sites, where they exhibited a measurable but subtle riparian response. The extent of the riparian zone varied between the four study sites, with a 1–5 m riparian zone at three sites and a gradually changing community up to 50–100 m upslope at one site. There was a trend for greater between plot variability immediately adjacent to the streams, possibly because this is a more highly disturbed environment. None of the habitat variables measured were consistently associated with riparian or upslope assemblages of beetles, probably explaining the subtlety of the beetles’ riparian response. Forest conservation efforts for terrestrial species should not necessarily be focused on the riparian zone in preference to upslope areas.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Email: Sue.Baker@forestrytas.com.au
Publication date: June 1, 2007